The seed for the Albuquerque band Encuentro was a Peruvian Independence Day party the ensemble played for. That got the musicians thinking about connecting the folk music for the party to the folk music each of them grew up with.
“We are such a diverse group of people. We said, ‘Let’s start pushing folkloric music of South America. It’s special,’ ” said singer Jackie Zamora, a native of Peru.
“It has such a rich history. We want to put it out for different venues, different crowds.”
Today, 18 months after the band’s founding, Encuentro’s seven members have embraced the folk music of at least seven countries.
The music incorporates, among others, the huayno and landó rhythms of Peru, the san juanito of Ecuador, the cueca of Chile, the morenada of Bolivia, the chacarera of Argentina, the cumbia of Colombia and the tropical venezolana of Venezuela.
And the musicians employ some folkloric instruments – Carlos Noboa and Mario Rubio, both of Ecuador, play the quena and zampoña and Kilko Paz the charango. Rubio’s brother, Hernan, plays guitar, and so does David Diaz of Peru. Fidel Gonzales of Mexico is on percussion.
Encuentro’s repertoire includes Bolivian songs with social themes. “A lot of those songs are for the laborers and for the miners,” Zamora said.
“The music we mostly like to play has to do with daily life, with human emotions. … The music is emblematic of the countries.”
Other songs are patriotic without being political.
WHEN: 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 6
WHERE: Outpost Performance Space, 210 Yale SE
HOW MUCH: $15 general public, $10 students and Outpost members in advance at the Outpost, by calling 268-0044 or at the door
“We play some of Mercedes Sosa’s nonpolitical songs about holding tight to your customs and about where you came from,” Zamora said.
“Being so far from home, this is our closest connection to our fellow countrymen who live here.”
Sosa was a famous Argentinian folk singer who was an exponent of nueva canción, a movement that encouraged music with a social message. She died in 2009.
— This article appeared on page V14 of the Albuquerque Journal